How to Know when to Quit

Exit strategyA business must have an exit strategy. If things becoming too hot too handle, escape from it or face the consequences.

Well, there are so many tough and aggressive entrepreneurs out there. So tough, that many of them refuse to ‘give up’ when faced with adversities – disastrous cash flow, lackluster management, drowsy business, or backstabbing partner – even if they were destroying entrepreneurs’ life, let alone facing bankruptcy.

Of course, giving up is not good. But know when to stop worth more than gold.

There is a world of difference between giving up and having an exit strategy.

Giving up is when you react to problems negatively without even trying. Exiting is when you react to problems positively with proper evaluation and after trying anything an entrepreneur can.

So, for a quitter, just like me, here’s some tips on how to know when to quit – elegantly.

Plan to quit even before you start your business

One major, huge, mistake by entrepreneurs is to think that starting your business right will guarantee you success. Not always. In fact, only 1 in 5 startups survive beyond the first year of operation.

The essence of entrepreneurship is to succeed more than failing – failing 5 times is not a big deal if you succeed in 6 opportunities.

So, again, plan an exit strategy before you even start your business – this will actually save you from hard times later on and provides you with some kind of safety net to fall upon when anything goes wrong

Quit when your business is declining or being stagnant

It is apparent to quit as soon as possible if your business is declining, but even if your business is being stagnant for two or three years, then you should quit immediately. Businesses are meant to grow. Why? simple. Inflation devalue your asset, not mentioning a recession period will do to your business. Also, don’t forget about the rising price of supplies and workforce salaries. That’s why your business have to grow to cover the operating costs.

Quit when you lose interest in what you are doing

No passion, no business. Period. No matter how hard you work, if you lost interest in what you are doing, your business will ail. It’s time to let it go – sell it to someone passionate enough, and move on. Find a venture that will interest you at least up until the next 5 years or so.

Last advice – From my personal experience, you ought to quit if your family start nagging you about the family cash flow situation. Personal finances are the best indicator whether your venture well worth it or not. Sell your current business, and start a new one.

Ivan Widjaya
A dedicated quitter